It’s day 4 of Social Distancing. Only three days of two men children home, two dogs staring at me, constant feedings in the kitchen, hearing the question, “is there any food?”, trying to work, attempting to focus, being distracted with all the news and reports, fitting in exercise, fighting the urge to open the pantry door, trying to work again, go to a meeting in a parking lot because everything is closed, walk the dogs, get out of the refrigerator, do yoga. . . .it’s pretty clear that I’m getting really antsy. Already.
I mentioned my “antsy ness” to a friend and he was not impressed. He said, “You are from Hazlehurst. This is nothing for you.” I thought about that and I think he is right. I grew up in a small town. We did not have restaurants on every corner (or really any corner). We did not have fitness boutiques or gyms with sign ups for classes. We could not just go to a Braves game. We had one movie theatre and a Hardee’s, and if I got caught hanging out in the Hardee’s parking lot I would have been grounded three times over.
My parents made sure they knew where I was when I was not at home. And we spent a lot of time at home. I spent a lot of time reading, chatting on the phone, lying on my bed daydreaming. I helped my grandmother clean her house. I helped cooking in the kitchen. I listened to my grandfather tell long and endless stories.
I did spend some time hanging out in that Hardee’s parking lot. . .
But I also I learned to play solitaire, make biscuits from scratch, put together puzzles, painted clay pots and furniture, read a lot, made up aerobics routines to the boom box in my bedroom, watched old black and white movies, did all the chores requested by my mom (while complaining and muttering under my breath I’m sure). I picked up pine cones, bathed and blow dried the dog, cut the grass, ran around our local track, and then ran some more.
Basically, I stayed home. There was no frenzy. And it was good. It was not hard.
Childbirth is hard. Raising teenagers is hard. Losing weight is hard. Breaking a bad habit is hard. Losing your mom is hard. Or any person you love. Making the right decision to follow health advisors during a time in need is not hard. Hunkering down to protect others, your family, yourself and to help the community at large is not hard.
Getting creative with finding ways to do what you normally do and perhaps doing those things you haven’t found the time for or doing some things you enjoy but rarely have the time for can all be good things.
Let’s all take it back to those times when we were not constantly going, going, going. When we were not in a state of frenzy. This just isn’t that hard.
*I am not making light of what is a hard situation for many. There are many who find it difficult to find home and shelter right now. There are also many big life events being postponed or cancelled. While those are hard, they are not damaging or life threatening so I hope we can all just keep the proper perspective*
I’m hoping to remember what it was like growing up, become more patient and empathetic and NOT 10 lbs heavier throughout this time of social distancing!